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The Freewheel line with a couple of English friends.

It takes a lot of beer to keep the wine business running smoothly. Here in Redwood City, we are very fortunate to have a great English style ale producer right in our backyard: Freewheel Brewing Company. The staff of K&L are fictures at our local pub, and it is a rare moment when one of us isn't there having a pint and a bite of their excellent food. We are also lucky enough to be the first place to offer their bottled beer for sale. If you have never had it, the Freewheel Brewing "FSB" Freewheel Special Bitter, California (500ml) is the benchmark in fresh, balanced, smashable ale. We will do our best to keep some in stock for you, the customer too!

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Entries in 2009 Bordeaux (10)


We're Off to Bordeaux! Ralph Sands Bids Farewell to 2009, Hello 2011!

By: Ralph Sands | K&L Senior Wine Specialist

Dear Bordeaux Wine Fans,

A Fond Farewell to the vintage of 2009! 

As we make our way to Bordeaux to evaluate the 2011 vintage I always like to touch base with my clients before leaving for a quick catch up on what is hot. 

When I get on the plane at this time of year, I mentally put to bed the vintage 2 years back which would be 2009, but not this time; the entire vintage is STILL red hot, and it deserves 100% of the hype. I think of 2009 as the “Wheel of Fortune” vintage. But it will be time to wave goodbye to 2009 very soon as inventories are finally running out.

The long story short…… Perfect weather, makes perfect wines. I have never tasted a vintage that was this good from top to bottom, and that is the key to a great vintage. The fruit is perfectly ripe, silky, fresh and pure with all elements of fruit, acidity and tannin in perfect balance. Great wines always taste great from the beginning of their lives, so these wines will give good pleasure young if in fact you like to drink young Bordeaux. I personally will not drink them young as they will be fantastic with the proper age of 7-10-15 20+ years, depending on the wine because of the fine balance that they possess.

While it is true that some estates in Bordeaux have absolutely lost their minds with their “new pricing” they have also lost a huge amount of loyal customers like me forever. This is unfortunate as we have worked hard to promote and sing the praises of these wines for decades, only to be drowned out from songs sung in Cantonese and Mandarin.

Don’t worry, it’s ok, let’s all move on to other wines. The reality is that there are thousands of great wines that offer great value in Bordeaux today and 2009 is just loaded with them. I’m personally selling many of those famous estates out of my collection as there is no passion to collect those wines any longer; what am I buying you ask? MORE 2009 BORDEAUX!!!! My cross section of estates purchased continues to widen and in the end I will own more estates and number of bottles from 2009 than any other vintage.


I love all the wines mentioned in my earlier blog post "Talking Bordeaux" and video (posted again for your viewing pleasure above) and would add to that list the wines listed below…..

Malescot St-Exupery… 129.99…Calon Segur…119.99…Rauzan-Segla…129.99…Alter Ego de Palmer…79.99…D’ Issan…64.99…Angludet…39.99…Langoa Barton…69.99…Lafon Rochet…54.99…Lagrange…62.99…La Fleur de Bouard…34.99…Roc de Cambes…69.99… Tourelles de Pichon Baron…44.99 and Franc Mayne…39.99…Croix de Beaucaillou…49.99…Lalande Borie…29.99…Reserve de la Comtesse…47.99 …and Malartic Lagraviere…56.99

As always, thank you very much for your business.

Cheers, Toujours Bordeaux and Go Giants!!!


Ralph Sands

Bordeaux Expert

Senior Wine Specialist

K&L Wine Merchants

Redwood City and San Francisco Ca.

1-800 247-5987 Ext# 2723

Direct Line 650-556-2723


Company Website-


2009 Bordeaux Roundup: Wines to Buy Now

By: Chiara Shannon      

There's a lot of hype about the 2009 Bordeaux vintage. From Robert Parker's pronouncement that 2009 is "unquestionably the greatest Bordeaux vintage I have ever tasted" (he went on to issue a whopping nineteen 100 point scores) and rival critic James Suckling's assertion that it is "the vintage of my career as a wine specialist" (Suckling awarded nine 100 point red wine scores), there is no scarcity of points and praise for countless wines from this vintage.

Incredibly, it's all true.

Perfect weather stretched over a long growing season in 2009, allowing for fruit to develop its full phenolic potential while also achieving absolute ripeness. Ideal conditions at harvest yielded fruit of impeccable quality, from the high rent districts to the satellites. While prices have soared for the top wines, superb quality exists across the board, and there are some incredible buys for the budget-minded consumer. 

The beauty of the 2009s is that they are loaded with ripe fruit and thus immediately tasty, but possess firm tannins and the structure to age. Though it is hard to tell beneath the omnipresent fruit, 2009 was the most tannic vintage in Bordeaux to date (eclipsed in average tannin level only by 2010). Ripe and powerful, these wines will always be good.

For wines to drink now over the next 3-5 years, you will get the most bang for your buck shopping the modest appellations - Côtes de Bourg, Bordeaux Superiour, Médoc/Haut-Médoc, etc. Spend a little more, and you can obtain some gorgeous wines in the $30-$60 range to hold for 5-7 years and enjoy over the next 15-20. 

With so many options, it might be hard to decide what buy! So, I've rounded up some of our favorite under- the-radar values to share with you (as pictured from left to right) tasted this week at our last Bordeaux staff tasting. These are in stock now and guaranteed to offer years of drinking pleasure, that is if you snag yours before K&L staffers buy them all...


2009 Roc de Cambes, Côtes de Bourg ($69.99) 


2009 Lanessan, Haut-Médoc  ($21.99)

Also in magnum ($39.99):


2009 Capbern Gasqueton, St-Estèphe  ($22.99)


2009 Poitevin, Médoc  ($13.99)

Also in magnum ($24.99):


2009 Coufran, Haut-Médoc ($24.99)


Shop all K&L 2009 Bordeaux wines in stock now!


2009 Bordeaux: The K&L Team's Top 10s

Editor's Note: Now that our team has settled back in after their rigorous trip to Bordeaux - all that tasting is tough, guys, we know - they've put together their personal Top 10 lists. Here we go:

Clyde Beffa's Top Ten (other than the First Growths)

1) Léoville-Las Cases

2) Malescot-St-Exupéry

                 3) Pavie-Macquin

                 4) Cos d'Estournel

                 5) Troplong Mondot

                 6) Ducru-Beaucaillou

                 7) Pontet-Canet

                 8) Haut-Bailly

                 9) Palmer

                10) Calon-Ségur

Trey Beffa's Top Ten

1) Pétrus

2) Latour

                 3) Léoville-Las Cases

                 4) Margaux

                 5) Ducru-Beaucaillou

                 6) Palmer

                 7) Lafite

                 8) Mouton

                 9) Pontet-Canet

                10) Malescot-St-Exupéry


Jeff Garneau's Top Ten (other than the First Growths)

1) Malescot-St-Exupéry

2) Cos d’Estournel

                 3) Léoville-Las Cases

                 4) Calon-Ségur

                 5) Pontet-Canet

                 6) Smith Haut Lafitte

                 7) Ducru-Beaucaillou

                 8) Haut-Bailly

                 9) Troplong Mondot

               10) Trotanoy


Alex Pross's Top Ten (other than the First Growths)

1) Malescot-St-Exupéry

2) Troplong Mondot

                 3) Calon-Ségur

                 4) Montrose

                 5) Léoville-Las Cases

                 6) Pontet-Canet 

                 7) Trotanoy

                 8) La Violette

                 9) Haut-Bailly

               10) Nenin